Department store de Bijenkorf records 12 percent sales increase in 2017
Dutch department store chain de Bijenkorf has recorded a 12 percent increase in sales over the year 2017, the company announced on Tuesday 1 May. According to the retailer, the Dutch retail market saw an increase of 3 percent in sales in the same period, based on figures from Statistics Netherlands (CBS).
Bijenkorf said in a press release that both physical stores as well as its web shop have attributed to the growth. The brick-and-mortar branches contributed 8 percent, while online sales accounted for 32 percent of the total sales increase. The retailer attributed the strong online growth to the introduction of free shipping for Dutch and Belgian customers, a service Bijenkorf launched in August 2017.
Another factor that helped boost Bijenkorf’s sales performance in 2017 was the company’s investments, which the retailer said was sourced from its own cash flow. In 2017, over €33 million was invested in both physical branches and the online shop. The department store chain launched a new cosmetics department at its Rotterdam store and Bijenkorf Utrecht introduced a new menswear floor; cosmetics and children’s wear departments. For 2018, the retailer also plans to open newly renovated departments at five of its seven branches.
Giovanni Colauto, CEO at Bijenkorf said in a press release: “Our strength is that we continuously innovate and continue to inspire and surprise our customers. We invest in brands, service and store experience. In 2017, we also announced the merger of the current two distribution centers (online and physical stores) into a newly to be built distribution center by mid-2019. By maintaining a central stock [location], we can further improve the service level. Unfortunately, it means that we have to say goodbye to 143 employees working at the distribution center in Woerden. A provision has been included for this in the annual figures.”
Excluding the effect of the one-off provision regarding the merger of the distribution center in Woerden, EBIT increased by €2.7 million to €38.7 million, a plus of 8% compared to the previous year.
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